May I say this is a very well-written account.
My husband of thirty years does not read at all. It's a serious issue simply because he's not been exposed to ideas and mores, examples of triumph over adversity and all that. He gets what he gets of progress through television. I can't count how many times I've tried to tell him about a way we might respond to this catastrophe or that, based on what I've learned from reading and paying attention to others. This is utterly ignored until he sees it on TV. Then it's as if it was his idea. No, he was perfect in courting in every way expect his lack of reading. I can honestly say that if I had it to do over again I would have escaped as you wisely did.